Friday, August 23, 2013

diy: clearance crafts

I was in Hobby Lobby the other day and wandered to the clearance section...just wanting to look. And then I found these great pieces! I spent $17 for all of the jewelry and the headband, earring hooks and ring for the necklace (so I can put it on a chain). What I like about the timeline jewelry is that there are pieces from different decades. The flower for the headband and earrings are both from the 90's. I'll probably end up buying some more later :)

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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

recipe: blueberry muffins

I made these last week and felt very accomplished. I went with a friend to pick the blueberries and had everything already on hand to make the muffins except for the yogurt. You can go to Ree's website to see her step-by-step picture instructions. 

3 cups minus 2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
Heavy pinch of salt
Dash of Nutmeg
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 generous cup plain, unflavored yogurt (throw in extra if you want)
2 cups fresh blueberries
Vanilla Extract
Softened Butter, for muffin tins
Turbinado sugar (optional)

"Preheat oven to 385 degrees. In a large bowl sift flour, baking soda, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. In another large bowl whisk together sugar, oil, cap-full of vanilla, egg, and yogurt. Add the dry ingredients and stir to a count of 10. Add blueberries, reserving 1/2 cup, to mixture and stir 3 times. Add mixture to well-buttered muffin pans. Sprinkle remaining berries on top and press down lightly. Sprinkle turbinado sugar over top (brown sugar can be used instead). Bake 20 to 25 minutes and allow to cool completely."

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Friday, August 16, 2013

book review: "bread & wine" by shauna niequist

"As a follow up to her two bestselling books, Bittersweet and Cold Tangerines, author and blogger Shauna Niequist returns with the perfect read for those who love food and value the community and connection of family and friends around the table.

Bread and Wine is a collection of essays about family relationships, friendships, and the meals that bring us together. This mix of Anne Lamott and Barefoot Contessa is a funny, honest, and vulnerable spiritual memoir. Bread and amp; Wine is a celebration of food shared, reminding readers of the joy found in a life around the table. It’s about the ways God teaches and nourishes people as they nourish the people around them. It’s about hunger, both physical and otherwise, and the connections between the two.
With wonderful recipes included, from Bacon-Wrapped Dates to Mango Chicken Curry to Blueberry Crisp, readers will be able to recreate the comforting and satisfying meals that come to life in Bread and Wine."
My thoughts: I've been a fan of Shauna's since I read her book Bittersweet. And this book has made me like her even more! Shauna writes with an honesty I don't see often. With each recipe (some I'm super excited to try!), she shares a part of her life - really allowing the reader to connect with her. There really aren't chapters - each recipe is a "chapter." I like books with natural stopping places so I can easily put the book down and come back to it without having to sit for a long time just to read a chapter. This is both a light read and heavy read. Shauna tells about making cookies with her son on Saturday mornings and about her struggle to have a second child. And she talks about the connection she makes between recipes and those moments in her life. I want to have a home like hers someday. A home that I open up to friends and family and we gather around the table, sharing food and life. 
I received a copy of this book from Thomas Nelson for my honest review.  

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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

enjoy God's grace while you wait

I was reading Joyce Meyer's devotional Trusting God Day by Day and every once in a while one really jumps out at me. Sunday's page was titled, "Enjoy God's Grace While You Wait." Here's part of what she wrote:

"...My grace (My favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for my strength and power are made perfect (fulfilled and completed) and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness." 2 Corinthians 12:9

"You may be frustrated, struggling, and unhappy simply because you are trying to fix something you cannot do anything about. Perhaps you have a situation in your life that you don't want, and you are trying to get rid of it. Maybe there is something you do want and are trying hard to get, yet nothing you try is working and it is frustrating you. In any case, the only thing you can do is cease from your own works, and trust God. While you are waiting for God to take care of the situation, I encourage you to enjoy the wait."

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Monday, August 12, 2013

diy: chocolate facial

I found this on Pinterest and knew it was something I had to try! It's only two ingredients - how easy is that?! I made it last night and not only did it smell good, it was good for my skin :) The coconut oil is a little pricey (I paid $8.50) but this only calls for a teaspoon so it'll last a while. Check out Tidy Mom's blog for her recipe and the other great stuff she has going on! I found a recipe for a chocolate scrub that I want to try next!

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Friday, August 9, 2013

diy: flower clips

I've had my eye on these fabric flowers from Hobby Lobby for about a year and finally bought them (plus they were half off!). There's fifty in the jar, five of each color. I paired up two for each clip because they're pretty thin. Using my trusty hot glue gun, I glued the flowers together first and then glued them to a clip (also from Hobby Lobby). I then put a pearl in the center but think when I make more, I might use smaller pearls and completely cover the center...just thinking aloud here. Or a large button might look cute - there are so many options! I'm planning on using some of the flowers for some decorative projects too :)

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

recipe: no bake s'mores cheesecakes

Don't these No Bake S'mores Cheesecakes look amazing?! And I love how she put them into these glasses - How Sweet It Is always has great presentation :) Here's the recipe for these cheesecakes or you can go to Jessica's blog

crust & topping
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup marshmallow fluff or cream
4 marshmallows, toasted and cut in half
chocolate ganache
4 ounces milk chocolate, chopped
3 tablespoons heavy cream
marshmallow cheesecake
1/2 cup whipped cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup marshmallow fluff or cream
1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
"In a small bowl, mix together butter and graham crumbs until moistened. Press crumbs into the container of your choice (jar, ramekin, etc) with the back of a spoon. Place the chocolate in a bowl. Add the heavy cream to a small saucepan and heat over medium heat until warm, just until bubbles appear on the edges. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let it sit for 30 seconds, then stir constantly until the chocolate is all melted and a smooth ganache comes together. Add about a teaspoon of the ganache on top of each graham crust.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until creamy. Add in the marshmallow fluff and beat until combined, then with the mixer on low speed, pour in the milk and vanilla extract. Beat on high speed until a smooth batter forms. Pour the batter on top of the chocolate ganache, leaving space on top for more chocolate and marshmallow.
Add another teaspoon of ganache on top of the cheesecake and a sprinkle of graham crumbs if you wish, then refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours. When ready to serve, add a tablespoon or so of marshmallow fluff on top of the ganache, then top with a toasted marshmallow. Sprinkle extra graham crumbs on top and serve!"

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Monday, August 5, 2013

diy: thrift store find!

I was in a local thrift store last month and happened across this great metal organizer! I bought it for $7 bucks and decided to give it a makeover. I'm super excited at how it turned out! I bought a can of Krylon "Watermelon" pink spray paint, giving it several coats (i.e. the whole can). I then used a polka dot stencil and finished with adding some ribbon on the sides. Ta da!

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Friday, August 2, 2013

diy: recycled jeans

I have some jeans that are beyond repair and I should probably throw away but I'm determined to recycle them! So I went to Pinterest for inspiration and found this blog with some great ideas! I like the rug or totes but all of them are super creative! You can go to Five Go Blogging's blog to see all of these projects. 

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